Health D-G clarifies Covid-19 tests for foreigners at govt outlets free, despite PM’s remark otherwise

Dr Noor Hisham said foreigners who walk in for Covid-19 tests will not be charged a fee regardless of their socio-economic background, after pointing out a ministry circular dated on January 29. — Bernama pic
Dr Noor Hisham said foreigners who walk in for Covid-19 tests will not be charged a fee regardless of their socio-economic background, after pointing out a ministry circular dated on January 29. — Bernama pic

PUTRAJAYA, March 23 — Foreign nationals who exhibits Covid-19 infection symptoms need not to pay outpatient treatment fee at government hospital or clinics, health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah has clarified today.

Dr Noor Hisham said foreigners who walk in for Covid-19 tests will not be charged a fee regardless of their socio-economic background, after pointing out a ministry circular dated on January 29.

“If a foreigner comes to the ministry’s clinic or hospital for non Covid-19 illnesses, they will be charged a fee set by the government.

“For Covid-19, as noted in the January 29 circular, fee will not be imposed on their regardless if they are rich or poor,” he said.

He was earlier asked to clarify Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s statement in a press conference earlier today that regular fees still apply to foreigners who come forward to get tested for the virus.

Yesterday, Senior Minister cum Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri also said Rohingyas and other foreigners who attended the Seri Petaling mosque tabligh gathering have been urged to come forward immediately to be tested for Covid-19, even if they were undocumented immigrants.

The tabligh gathering, which ran from February 27 to March 1 and was attended by at least 12,000 people including 1,500 foreigners, has been identified as the major cluster of Covid-19 infections in the country and region.

Earlier today, Dr Noor Hisham also said the total number of local infections stood at 1,518 with 212 new cases reported, with 14 deaths recorded so far in Malaysia.

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